A bit about us...

We are a modern family of three, living on less than two acres with a 3,000 square foot garden that meets our produce needs and allows us to share with friends and neighbors. Our laying flock of chickens seems to expand each year as we raise chicks each Spring to replace older hens. This blog is more of a journal, if you will, for us to chronicle and share our experiences in the yard, garden and kitchen. It is our hope that along the way a few folks might learn something, be entertained, or simply enjoy sharing in our stories and the lessons we learn on a daily basis. I named the blog after the times when I am the happiest, when I am elbow deep in earth.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

More after work fun

As always, this post may contain spoilers!

#51, first in a parking structure
Hitting a milestone like #50 didn't slow us down.  On the contrary, we were even more excited to get back out there.  On lunch, I decided to check the area around the office for caches, and, what do you know!? There was one located in the parking structure adjacent to our office building. I told Shane about it and we decided to make a quick trip over to locate it before it was time to get back into our day of meetings.  We had never located one in a parking structure before, so we weren't sure of the hide technique.  Being multilevel, we found ourselves searching several floors once we pinned down which side it was on (thanks to the satellite imagery on the app for our phones).  Shane made the find without too much trouble and we were logging another smiley.  There was a trackable inside this particular hide, but it had a huge laminated photo hitchhiker that would have been difficult to place in another cache, so we passed on it.  It was neat to score a find on lunch and leads me to think that we may have to plan a little picnic lunch caching later in the season.

#52, a new series, QOF
After work, we couldn't help but to look for a few more on the way home. There is a whole series of QOF (Quick Office Find) caches that are hidden near office buildings.  We discovered the series this day and looked for one of them.  It wasn't a super quick find, but not terrible.  Again, there was a trackable inside.  This one also had a large hitchhiker, but not so much that we couldn't find it a new home.

Big, adorable hitchhiker
The challenge with this find was not the size of the hitchhiker, although he was plush and bulky, but that the goal and related information was in french. I used google to translate it so we could try to place it appropriately.  He wanted to visit lots of place, preferably warm ones.  It had actually been set out into the world in the Caribbean.  Someone had picked it up caching while cruising and was not able to find a cache large enough to place it in, so it came home to the states with the man who found it.  We would either try to move him south or at least get him into a cache where someone else could move him along his goal.  See where he is, was, and will be here.

We decided to head more toward home and see what we stumbled across.  On our way, we noticed another cache that looked interesting.  We were hesitant to enter the drive we found that appeared to lead to the cache, as it was posted as private. However, it was posted as for sale, so we knew we had an excuse in addition to our truth for being there.  Upon finding the cache, in this subtly *ahem* marked pipe, we noticed we were TERRIBLY close to a subdivision in which we could have parked without breaking rules.  We will be more mindful of our direction of approach going forward.  It is NEVER the goal of any cacher to violate private property rights or to tread where we are not welcome.

#53 was a copy, as the original was lost
Nevertheless, we were faced with yet another  trackable in this cache.  This was another travel bug with a cute and clever hitchhiker.  Its goal is to visit caches that require long hikes or 4 wheel drive to access.  This cache suited neither goal very well, so we snagged it to fill its goal better in another locale.

There was an additional learning opportunity in this find as well.  This was the first time we found a "copy" TB tag.  The original tag and hitchhiker had come up missing at some point and the owner had a new tag made and a new hitchhiker attached to send back out into the world.  You can read about its travels here.  It was lost as a music loving crocodile in the  Netherlands before its debut as an off the beaten path seeking jeep.  I love to see where the trackables have been.  I add them to our watch list to keep an eye on where they go as well!

#54 was also a good history lesson
Our next stop as we made our way home was in a cemetery we pass every day on the way to and from work.  I have always wondered about it and thought it looked like a very well kept cemetery.  There was a great memorial for flight 255 that crashed into I-94 in the late 80s.  I do not recall this event as I was living in Arizona at the time, but it was really a powerful thing to reflect on.  The plane took off, having not completed proper pre-flight checks and crashed into the highway not far from the airport, killing 2 people on the ground and everyone on the plane, save one little girl.
156 people lost their lives that day.  It was somber and touching to stand before her likeness in bronze swinging on a swing, indulging in the joys of childhood, reflecting on what she went through and the great loss of that day. There were a few folks who were apparently not identifiable and there are markers to honor them.

As we circled around the path to head for one more on the grounds, we saw a collection of stones that looked like large plaques.  We read a couple and they were markers with information about naturally beautiful places in Michigan.  Some research when we came home showed us that they are actually in the shape of the state and mark natural highlights around our coast.

This shape can only be seen from the air.  We found that rather fitting.

Our last stop for the day (it was starting to drizzle and was cold) yielded this little critter hanging in a tree.  It is one of yet another series we are discovering out there.

#55 was small and unique

This series is called Cap-Cap.  We will add it to the list we need to come back to and complete at a later date! 5 caches for a work day hunt was a great set of smileys for our map, so we headed home to get some dinner and do a few chores.  With Spring on the way, there is no shortage of tasks available!

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